Traveling with Fructose Malabsorption: Washington, D.C.

DSCN3351Hi, everyone!  Our good friend Megan took a trip last week to Washington, D.C. and once again kindly wrote about it.  She came up with a fantastic way to stay fructose free on vacation!  I can’t wait to try it out!  Here’s what she wrote:

I feel like I’ve discovered a vital key to traveling with Fructose Malabsorption: Airbnb.com. I mentioned in my last guest post that I wanted to give Airbnb a try on my next trip and lucky me, my next travel opportunity appeared! My husband got a new job and with the time off between the old job and the new job, we decided to take a short vacation to Washington DC.
First, let me explain how Airbnb works. You register on the website and create a profile. Once you have a profile, you can rent out other peoples’ homes, apartments, flats, lofts…even tree houses…you can rent almost anything that provides shelter, almost anywhere in the world. You can opt to rent the entire space or just a room in someone’s home. My husband, Jon, and I rented an entire apartment because I think it’s a little strange to rent a room in someone’s house and hang out with total strangers, but that’s just me.
After searching available rentals in the area you’re visiting and finding one you like, you can DSCN3339message the homeowners to ask questions and request a reservation. Jon and I rented a one-bedroom apartment in the heart of DC for $100.00 a night. The man we rented from had rave reviews from other renters and didn’t look like a serial killer so I figured we’d be okay. Through Airbnb messaging, phone or text, you and the person you’re renting from set up a check-in and out time and negotiate how and where you’ll pick up the keys to your rental. Then it’s vacation time!
The reason I’m so excited about Airbnb is because it allows you to rent a place with a kitchen, thus eliminating the hazards of eating three meals a day in a restaurant. And it can save you a lot of money. Jon and I checked hotel prices for the same area in DC as the apartment we rented and they were three times the price of the Airbnb rental!
I realize Airbnb may sound creepy or sketchy to some, and I’m sure it can be, but I thought of it like this…either way I’m going to have to take a risk. I can risk spending my entire vacation in a hotel, sick from restaurant food, or I can risk staying in some random person’s home. As terrifying as potentially being kidnapped is, nothing is scarier than eating at a restaurant that prepares my food in the same vicinity as onions. I decided that getting fructosed was a much more realistic risk than being kidnapped, so we went with Airbnb. Overall, we had a great experience and having access to a kitchen really lowered the stress level that often surrounds mealtime.
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Fructose-wise, our trip went pretty well. Our rental apartment was two blocks from a Whole Foods (before renting I staked out the location of grocery stores) so every morning we had breakfast in the apartment, walked to Whole Foods to buy my lunch and then went about our sightseeing. Every evening, we walked home and made dinner.
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There were a few occasions when we did try restaurants. I looked up restaurants with gluten free menus because I figured if they already cater to GF people, making a few more adjustments for me would be okay. That turned out to be a good plan, as all the places I chose Firefly and Oby Lee had separate GF menus and were patient and friendly with me.
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One place we tried that I have to tell you about was Sweet Green.  This place was AWESOME! It’s a build your own salad bar with local, organic ingredients. They even have olive oil and a squeeze of lime for those who don’t want pre-mixed dressings! Unfortunately, Sweet Green restaurants are only on the East Coast as of now…maybe there’s a Minnesota reader out there looking for a good franchise to invest in and make some extra cash…that or you could rent out your guest room.

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